Movies

Movies

Thu
13
Oct

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Drops New Trailer

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

From Lucasfilm comes the first of the Star Wars standalone films, ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY, an all-new epic adventure. In a time of conflict, a group of unlikely heroes band together on a mission to steal the plans to the Death Star, the Empire’s ultimate weapon of destruction. This key event in the Star Wars timeline brings together ordinary people who choose to do extraordinary things, and in doing so, become part of something greater than themselves.

ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY is directed by Gareth Edwards and stars Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn, Donnie Yen, Mads Mikkelsen, Alan Tudyk, Riz Ahmed, with Jiang Wen and Forest Whitaker. Kathleen Kennedy, Allison Shearmur and Simon Emanuel are producing, with John Knoll and Jason McGatlin serving as executive producers. “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” opens in U.S. theaters on December 16, 2016.

Tue
11
Oct

Killing Reagan Director Rod Lurie: "...Even Democrats Nostalgic for Ronald Reagan."

Killing Reagan Promo

Rod Lurie wrote and directed the widely praised Academy Award- and Golden Globe Award-nominated political thriller THE CONTENDER, which took the first-ever Alan J. Pakula Award. For the small screen, Lurie also created the series COMMANDER IN CHIEF, which was nominated for the Best Drama Series Golden Globe, and for which Geena Davis won the Best Actress Golden Globe for her depiction of the first female president of the United States.

Lurie's latest project is the made-for-television movie, KILLING REAGAN, based off the book of the same name by FOX News commentator Bill O'Reilly, which airs Saturday, October 16, on the National Geographic channel.

Bill O'Reilly's book, KILLING REAGAN, is done in a very "outside looking in" documentary style. How is the film going to be in comparison -- a documentary style or a more traditional dramatic reenactment?

Fri
07
Oct

Legend of Tarzan Doesn't Have That Swing

Legend of Tarzan Blu-ray

Tarzan. There are so few legends sprung up from American literature that are so rich with potential as the story of John Clayton, Lord Greystoke, orphaned infant raised by apes in the jungles of Africa. And there are so few moviegoers who really know much beyond the Ron Ely and Johnny Weissmuller films of bygone days. Not many know the Tarzan who learned to read English from a primer but speak French from a jungle explorer.

I'll give Director David Yates and his writers this credit -- they at least tried to put as much of the Edgar Rice Burroughs character as they could into THE LEGEND OF TARZAN -- and they couldn't have cast a better Tarzan than TRUE BLOOD's Alexander Skarsgård for sheer rippling abs combined with a gentle voice.

Thu
06
Oct

The Girl on the Train - Perfect for Fans of "Gone Girl"

The Girl on the Train

Last night, I committed a cardinal sin. 

I watched the movie without having read the book first. 

I know, I know. After years of shaming Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, and Hunger Games fans who said they didn't need to read the books because they saw the movies, I became a culprit. Although I still might check out the book because I really enjoyed the story. 

THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN is a thriller of GONE GIRL proportions. The story focuses on three women:

Wed
28
Sep

'Be Prepared' for Jon Favreau's New Project: THE LION KING

There will be more references made to the original animated movie than Rafiki can shake a stick at, but with news that Jon Favreau (THE JUNGLE BOOK) is directing a live action update of The LION KING, I am pouncing out of my skin!

It only seemed like a natural progression with the success of THE JUNGLE BOOK, especially if you leapt out of your seat while Mowgli rode on the back of a wildebeast. I got excited and then my heart sank as I thought of that memorable scene where Mufasa died trying to save Simba.

Too soon. It will always be too soon to revisit that emotional moment.

There is no reason we can't get Jeremy Irons and James Earl Jones to reprise their roles as Scar and Mufasa respectively. And heck, even Nathan Lane and Ernie Sabella as Timon and Pumba are capable of jumping into the fray.

Mon
26
Sep

The Peculiar Tim Burton Does It Again with MISS PEREGRINE'S HOME

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children

Based on the debut novel by Ransom Riggs, MISS PEREGRINE’S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN tells the story of a young teen named Jacob Portman (Asa Butterfield, ENDER’S GAME) who, through and from his grandfather Abe (Terence Stamp), discovers clues to a mystery that spans time itself, leading him to a magical, mysterious place called Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children...and it is here that the mystery and the danger deepens and escalates as he comes to grip with who he is, who his grandfather was, and who Miss Peregrine and the extraordinary “peculiar” children are.

I found this to be a very interesting movie on several levels. For one, it was sort of like the X-Men, sort of like The Avengers, sort of like The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, sort of like Harry Potter, sort of like Beetlejuice, and sort of like Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends, all in one.

Thu
22
Sep

Watch the Teaser Trailer for an All-New SMURFS Movie!

The Smurfs

Just when you thought those little blue devils were done smurfing around, SONY Pictures Animation dropped a teaser trailer on us!

Featuring the voices of Demi Lovato (Smurfette), Rainn Wilson (Gargamel), Joe Manganiello (Hefty), Jack McBrayer (Clumsy) and Danny Pudi (Brainy). 

Due to the unfortunate passing of the wonderfully talented Jonathan Winters, Mandy Patinkin will be taking over as Papa Smurf.

Fri
16
Sep

Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows - Fun and Action-Packed

TMNT Out of the Shadows on BD and DVD

A year after the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles took down their nemesis, Shredder (Brian Tee), and sent him to prison, they are still living under the radar in the sewers, sneaking into basketball games and enjoying pizza. It's not a perfect existence, but more or less they are happy. However, their friend April (Megan Fox) learns that scientist Baxter Stockton (Tyler Perry) is somehow planning to help Shredder break out during a prisoner transfer. Despite Donatello (Jeremy Howard), Leonardo (Pete Ploszek), Michaelangelo (Noel Fisher), and Raphael (Alan Ritchson) racing to stop this, Shredder manages to escape with the help of Stockton's teleportation device. When the Turtles realize Shredder's plans to open a portal and ensure his rising power, they race to stop him.

Mon
12
Sep

James Wan Conjures Up Chills in Sequel - The Conjuring 2 on Blu-ray and DVD

The Conjuring 2 on Blu-ray and DVD

When I volunteered to review THE CONJURING 2 on Blu-ray, I went into it without having seen the film to which this is titularly a sequel. As it turns out, that's quite okay, because in a broader sense it's not only a stand-apart film, but it's also the latest in a long sequence of stories, from different directors and production companies, stringing back to THE AMITYVILLE HORROR. That's because the protagonists of this film are Ed and Lorraine Warren (portrayed as they were in THE CONJURING by PATRICK WILSON and VERA FARMIGA), the same investigators who were called in to investigate the house in Amityville, New York in the 1970s.

Thu
08
Sep

Everything We Know About The MCU’s Spider-Man Villains

Michael Keaton -- a Spidey villain?

CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR was, as we put in our review, Marvel’s biggest blockbuster yet. But even with the bulk of the MCU’s character arsenal all on one screen again, Tom Holland stole the show as the new Peter Parker/Spider-Man. Holland had a great deal of fun with limited screen time, and the result is that rather than feeling fatigued with a third iteration of this character, fans are excited to see more.

Wed
31
Aug

The Nice Guys a Window into Not-So-Nice Seventies Detective Genre

The Nice Guys on Blu-ray

Shane Black's THE NICE GUYS is a retro-cool foray into the seedy seventies. And nowhere were the seventies more seedy than in smog-choked, porn-brimming Los Angeles, where our two not-exactly-heroes, Jackson Healy (RUSSELL CROWE) and Holland March (RYAN GOSLING) meet up.

Wed
24
Aug

HELL OR HIGH WATER Is Jeff Bridges At His Oscar-Worthy Best

HELL OR HIGH WATER starts Friday 8/19/16.

For my money, there may not be a finer American actor working today than Jeff Bridges. The man is always interesting to watch on the big screen. From earnest heroes in the first remake of KING KONG, TRON, and the wonderful animated film THE LAST UNICORN, to playing as or opposite the zany in films like THE FISHER KING and TH EBIG LEBOWSKI to managing to out-Duke the Duke in the excellent remake of TRUE GRIT, Bridges has consistently reinvented himself over a career spanning nearly every decade of his life. His latest film, HELL OR HIGH WATER, is a modern western noir hybrid, expertly written by Taylor Sheridan (2015’s acclaimed SICARIO) and directed by an Englishman or Scottish heritage named David Mackenzie, who won 16 awards for his 2013 film STARRED UP but has no credits that will be instantly familiar to American audiences. Until now, that is.

Sun
14
Aug

God's Not Dead 2 Not Quite as Alive as its Prequel

God's Not Dead 2 on DVD

With the first GOD'S NOT DEAD movie, the setting was the college campus, a forum of relatively free discourse even when pitting student against teacher. In GOD'S NOT DEAD 2, the stage shifts to the high school, where an A.P. history teacher known for her optimism is asked a question comparing the non-violent teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Mahatma Gandhi to Jesus. When the teacher, Grace Wesley (Melissa Joan Hart, MELISSA & JOEY), answers the question, quoting the teaching that would align with the philosophy, it gets recorded and sent to the world.

Thu
11
Aug

Sisters Doing It For Themselves, or Sloppy Seconds? The Coming Trend of Gender-Swap Remakes

Battle of the sexes in film

I'll admit it. I thought the remake of GHOSTBUSTERS, going out of it's way to gender-swap the characters, was a film with an idea shoehorned into it (quod vide: gimmick). I wasn't vehement about it, I didn't feel the need to pan it heavily before it even hit the screens. I was just overwhelmingly nonplussed by the concept. Then the reviews came out, and it turned out to be a good movie after all.

Sun
07
Aug

SUICIDE SQUAD: Margot Robbie Comes in Like a Wrecking Ball

Suicide Squad

From the initial trailers, I was hyped over SUICIDE SQUAD.  Unfortunately, I was over-hyped due to the star-studded cast of supervillains and because I grew up appreciating the DC universe.    I am from the era of Michael Keaton Batman, so I liked DC before Marvel ever came across my radar.  Because I was a teenager, I did not mind BATMAN FOREVER nor BATMAN AND ROBIN.  The "campy" aspect was at an all-time high, and big box office actors joined the cast which was great for a teen girl who was in love with Chris O'Donnell as Robin.  

Which brings me to SUICIDE SQUAD: it was okay.  It was entertaining for the first 75% of the movie before it becomes even too outlandish for me (and the great soundtrack also tapers off).  Robbie Margot steals the shows as Harley Quinn, but not many others are stand-out characters aside from her, Jay Hernandez as Diablo, and Viola Davis as Amanda Waller.  

Fri
05
Aug

Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn Is A Better Joker Than Jared Leto In Suicide Squad

Suicide Squad opens Aug 5, 2016.

What a drag it must be for DC Comics and their parent company, Warner Brothers, to constantly be chasing Marvel. Oh sure, DC is currently showing up in the top 10 of comic book title sales, but only because at their core, most collectors are obsessive compulsive individuals. Every five years, when DC relaunches their comic universe and throws continuity out the window, many ardent fans take to the internet chatroom and social media outlets, throw a fit about DC doesn’t respect their audience (and they don’t, but that’s another story) and still go out and buy all of the first issues of the new comics line every five years. So while their sales are up, their brand loyalty and consumer confidence are not close to what it should be. Marvel makes mistakes too, yes, but they’re often stories that just missed their mark for whatever reason, and they haven’t built their business model around a cycle of planned irrelevancy.

Thu
28
Jul

Is JASON BOURNE Back For Good Or Is This Matt Damon's Franchise Swan Song?

JASON BOURNE in theatres everywhere July 29, 2016.

You know how you absolutely love a show, or a comic book, or a film franchise, but they eventually start to wear out their welcome? The plots become rote, the twists become predictable, and you drift apart. Call it Prequel/Sequel Fatigue, call it milking it for all its worth, call it what you will, but Hollywood has settled into a routine of turning everything that makes a respectable profit into a franchise and then squeezing every last drop out of it. Such has been the case with the Jason Bourne character. Created in the novels of the late great thriller author Robert Ludlum, Bourne had a successful film run in the big screen adaptions of THE BOURNE IDENTITY (2002), THE BOURNE SUPREMACY (2004), and THE BOURNE ULTIMATUM (2007).

Tue
19
Jul

BATMAN V SUPERMAN v Fan ULTIMATE Expectations

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Ultimate Edition on Blu-ray

Probably not since LORD OF THE RINGS have expectations for an extended edition of a film been so high as it has been with BATMAN V SUPERMAN:DAWN OF JUSTICE Ultimate Edition. With fans in a schism over their reviews on the theatrical release of the film, running the gamut from Batman's body count to Wonder Woman's too-short screen time, people are waiting to see if an extra 30 minutes of footage alters their perception of what they've already seen.

The answer? Probably not. If you liked it, there's more to like. If you hated it, there's more to hate. People are rather intractable about things once they've already made their minds up. (GHOSTBUSTERS, anybody?)

Fri
15
Jul

Ghostbusters, Sexism, and Ghostbros - A Review Wrapped in a Rant

Ghostbusters

 

            Buckle up – this review comes with a vent.
            By now, you’ve probably heard about Paul Feig’s summer Ghostbusters reboot, featuring the classic theme song, lots of pestering ghosts, and a quartet of newbie ghost hunters – oh yeah, did I mention that this time, the Ghostbusters are all ladies?
            Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Leslie Jones, and Kate McKinnon star as the Ghostbusters in this 2016 reboot of the 1984 classic. Three scientists and a street-smart subway worker team up to take down a man hell bent on releasing an army of ghosts all over NYC, all while proving their credibility amidst a sea of nonbelievers. Sounds awesome, right?

            Enter Ghostbros.

            What is a “Ghostbro?”

            When I spoke with my dad on the phone and told him I was going to see Ghostbusters, he responded with: “Well, I loved the original – but isn’t the new one getting really bad reviews?”

Thu
30
Jun

Bolster Your Firewalls: Wreck-It Ralph Wrecks the 'Net in 2018

In an announcement today from Walt Disney Animation Studios, the sequel to 2012's WRECK-IT RALPH is coming to theaters on March 9th, 2018!

Moving on from the arcade, Ralph and Venellope von Schweetz will be racing along the information highway via the internet. John C. Reilly and Sara Silverman are slated to return to voice their lovable, yet flawed, characters.

The movie will be directed by Rich Moore (ZOOTOPIA) and Phil Johnston (writer: ZOOTOPIA, WRECK-IT RALPH), and produced by Clark Spencer (ZOOTOPIA, BOLT) has yet to be given an official name.

Here are a few statements from their announcement on Facebook Live today:

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